Album Review: Capital Enemy - 'Life Sentence'

29 February 2016 | 10:58 am | Alex Sievers
Originally Appeared In

More hardcore than the darkest, deepest depths of PornHub.

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Yo! The Melbourne boys in Capital Enemy have a brand new EP coming out and it’s called ‘Life Sentence‘ (released through the kind folks at 1054 Records). Essentially, it is six pure songs of run-of-the-mill brutal hardcore. That’s it. We could end the review right here. Right Now. Like, riiiiiiiiiiigggggghhhhhtttttttt….NOW!

But, we won’t do that. That would be rather silly of us, so, let’s dig in.

The instrumentation - gang vocals, the breakdowns, and the riffs - is just the basic hardcore gang vocals, breakdowns, and riffs you would have heard a thousand times, but that doesn't mean it's bad, as the delivery is solid and the songs are decent too. Furthermore, the macho, stick-it-to-the-man lyrics and vibe of the group definitely isn't original but it really works for their style, adding weight to the songs. Oh, and the occasional metal growls and barks, and snarly screams are a nice touch too. They help to push the band out from the rest of the hardcore/punk crowd, like Rust Proof do.

Now, while the songs themselves are solid, and despite a wide breadth, the mix lets the release down quite significantly.  It’s the same problem we had with Victim Control’s debut EP – a rough mix can add that raw element to it, or it can take you out of the experience. It’s a fine line to walk and there’s been a bit of a misstep here. Thus, the mix is rather rough at times, and you can hear the low end muddling up a little in the breakdowns, especially in 'Shut You Down', which is a bit of a shame. Although, you can argue that this works in their underground style somewhat. In any case, you've been warned.

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Also, the audio sample from John Wayne’s Big Jake is a pretty cool intro for the title track, easily the best song off the EP. Just sayin’.

A solid EP of meat and potatoes (the most hunger inducing euphemism of all time) hardcore that isn’t any different from what their buds are doing. However, the songs and performances are damn solid and, like Rust Proof, Capital Enemy are heavier than most of their peers, and that’s bound to draw some new ears to the fray.

1. Introduction

2. Path To Misery

3. Life Sentence

4. Undefeated

5. Shut Your Down

6. Pure Disdain